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It was in Trent, Northern Italy, 1944 that Chiara and her first few companions attended the Mass on the Feast of Christ the King. At the end of the Mass she and her friends remained recollected and reflected on a phrase they had heard during the Mass: from the book of Psalms: “Ask me and I shall give you all the peoples and lands of the earth.” (Ps 2,8). They asked God to help them put this phrase into action by saying to God, ‘You know how to bring about unity. Here we are. Use us.’

For an ideal as vast as unity, the request from Jesus to his Father “May they all be one” (Jn 17, 21), the boundaries could be nothing other than the furthest corners of the earth. Right from the outset the embryonic Movement was far sighted. No-one at that time could have imagined that the dream of reaching the ends of the earth would be accomplished so quickly. There was no specific plan or blueprint for spreading the Movement but they followed the way lead by ‘Someone’.

Chiara explained what this meant during the XIX National Eucharistic Conference in Pescara 1977, “The Movement grew and unfolded in line with the precise plan God has for us. It was always there unseen and then it was revealed little by little… just as a pen does not know what it will write, a brush doesn’t know what it will paint, the chisel what it will sculpt. So it was when God takes someone by the hand to found his work, that person does not know what they should do. The person is only and instrument for God’s work. So it was in Trent. I had no plan, I knew nothing. The idea for the Opera (the Movement) was in God, the plan was in heaven. It was like that at the start and has been during all these years as the Focolare Movement has developed.”

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